While he's regarded today as one of the most famous and revolutionary painters in history, Claude Monet was rejected often throughout his youth by the Salon, France's state-sponsored art gallery. Monet: The Early Years features the works of a young emerging artist, whose experimentations with light and form were not always accepted by the art community at large.
For this two-part series, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco spoke with two artists in the Bay Area about their most memorable rejections, and the paths that unfolded after their early setbacks. The portrait of a struggling artist is no cliche, but the story of success is always unique.
Arturo Chacón-Cruz stars as Rodolfo in the San Francisco Opera’s summer season production of Puccini’s La Bohème. Mr. Chacón-Cruz, a tenor, is returning to the SF Opera after his 2012 debut as the Duke of Mantua in Rigoletto.
When asked about a memorable rejection from his early artistic career, Mr. Chacon-Cruz recalled an agent who told him to get a “temp job” instead of continuing to go to auditions. “It made me re-evaluate everything. I left that agency and surrounded myself with people from whom I could learn, and who would tell me the hard truths while believing in my potential. I had to get rid of my pride and work on getting better every day. After a few months, I did my first tour of auditions in the U.S. and Europe, and came back with a handful of important contracts,” he said.